The most famous disaster in the Strait of Bonifacio was that of the French frigate Sémillante on February 15, 1855. Sémillante had left the port of Toulon the day before on its way into the Black Sea to supply the Crimean War with troops. A storm caused it to hit a reef; the ship sank and none of the 750 soldiers on board survived.
After a tanker disaster in 1993, the passage through the Strait of Bonifacio has been prohibited for French and Italian flag ships with dangerous goods. Passage for ships with dangerous goods sailing under other flags is strongly discouraged and subject to mandatory piloting.
Its maximum depth is 100 metres.